Sting nets armed tow-truck robbery suspects

January 12, 2012 4:46:26 AM PST
A teenager was wounded during a police sting to catch tow truck robbery suspects in south suburban Harvey.

Harvey police say the suspect, who is 14, was arrested around 11 a.m. Wednesday during a sting. Officials say two police officers were posing as tow truck drivers when they got a call to pick up a junk car in the alley near 153 rd and Marshfield in the south suburb.

"They pulled a weapon out, my other officer discharged his and shot him," Cmdr. Cameron Forbes, Harvey Police Dept., said.

Truck driver Charles Thomas said the details of the police sting, location of the crime, and description of the offenders mirrors what happened to him on Monday when two suspects robbed him at gunpoint.

"To my left, the other suspect jumped on my cab and pulled a pistol to my head and demanded my money," Charles Thomas, tow truck driver, said. "The only thing that came to my mind was my kids, you know. That's the first thing that came to my mind. I was just wishing that the guy wouldn't pull the trigger."

The teenager who was wounded by police during the undercover operation lives across the street from the crime scene. His mother, who heard the shots, said her son was outside getting a garbage bag.

"Harvey always talks about gun violence but they don't stop. They say they're trained to kill," Toni Powe, suspect's mother, said.

The suspect's family said the teenager and officer who shot him have a history of problems in the last two years.

"We have to go to court tomorrow with this officer that shot my nephew, and this officer stated to my nephew that he wasn't going to be at the next court date," Anita Gaines said.

The injured suspect is at Christ Hospital. A second suspect was taken into police custody.

Charges have not been filed. Illinois State Police are investigating the police shooting.